Two women have come forward with details regarding the behavior of San Diego Mayor Bob Filner. Last week, Filner’s former political allies called on him to resign amid allegations of sexual harassment. Their calls were subsequently joined by more Democrats, but Filner has refused to resign.
One woman spoke to ABC News 10 in San Diego to tell her story on the condition of anonymity. “She said Mayor Filner had inappropriately touched her behind closed doors, with no one else in the room.” The woman revealed a detailed account of the situation but requested the details not be published. “She said the mayor did this to many women, and many people knew about it.”
“It’s one of the worst kept secrets in town,” Woman One said. “Everyone in the power structure knew this,” she said of people in local government.
“I heard more than once, that people would rather have a single man in office that disrespects women, than a man in office … representing an entire party that disrespects women,” she said.
Woman One said Filner’s behavior was like this for a long time.
“One of his Achilles heels when he ran for mayor, ‘How do you manage the women’?” Woman One said.
Another woman came forward in an email to the San Diego Reader. The Reader reports, “there are now claims that the mayor’s advances toward women were directed not only at members of his staff and city employees.”
The second woman described a situation where she approached Filner about an “important issue to her community” and waited in line for more than an hour to speak with the Mayor.
When her turn came, she entered an enclosed cubicle where Filner sat at a desk next to mayoral staff member Willie Blair. The woman explained her complaints. A few minutes later, she says Filner told Blair to leave the cubicle.
“After he excused Blair, he told me that he thought I was a very attractive woman and asked if I would go out with him,” says the woman in a July 14 email.
“I thought he was making a joke and told him that I knew he had a very attractive fiancée. He then repeated that he would like to go out with me. He never acknowledged my comment about his fiancée. He then said he would like to kiss me. I did not acknowledge him. He leaned over and kissed me anyway. I got up and left.”
More details are expected to emerge today at an 11amPT press conference held by Filner’s former allies. Prior to his election as Mayor, Filner served ten terms in Congress.